Skier released from hospital, avoids public and media

FARMINGTON — Along with other well-wishers, Daryl "Poochie" Searles of Phillips wanted to do something when he heard Nicholas Joy, 17, of Medford, Mass., had been found alive Tuesday at Sugarloaf.

Ann Bryant/Sun Journal

Daryl "Poochie" Searles of Phillips holds a bag with grapes and a whoopie pie, which he wanted to give to lost skier Nicholas Joy as he left Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington on Wednesday morning. Joy, who stayed overnight at the hospital after spending two nights in a snow cave on Sugarloaf Mountain, was discharged and left with his parents by an exit away from the public and media.

Joy, who became lost while skiing Sunday, was taken to Franklin Memorial Hospital by ambulance Tuesday morning. He stayed overnight and was discharged about 8:25 a.m. Wednesday.

Hospital spokeswoman Jill Gray told the media that the family had left Wednesday morning and that Joy was fine, but tired.

She said his parents, Robert and Donna Joy, would allow media to contact Nicholas in a few days after he rests. Whether he wants to talk about his experience or not, the parents are leaving that decision up to him, she said.

Searles, along with Maine and Boston-area television crews, and a representative from "Good Morning America," were waiting to talk to Joy outside the hospital Wednesday morning.

The family, however, left the hospital through an exit away from them.

When Searles first heard the news of Joy's rescue Tuesday morning, he gathered a bunch of grapes and a whoopie pie, drove to Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington and waited outside along with media from across the state and New England.

"I saw the report and wanted to tell him how glad I am he was found," Searles said Tuesday as he waited more than three hours.

Finally, Nicholas' mother came out heading for her car, and Searles offered the gift to her for Nicholas.

"She just said 'no thanks,'" Searles said Wednesday morning.

He felt badly but said he could understand a parent's protection.

After learning Joy spent the night at the hospital, he came back Wednesday morning in hopes of offering the gift to Nicholas and wishing him well when he left.

While hospital security sought a way for the family to leave, the family planned their departure at an exit away from media and Searles.

The family said in a statement Tuesday that he was doing well. They also thanked everyone for their hopes and prayers.

Joy spent two nights in a snow cave he built and on Tuesday climbed a steep embankment to a snowmobile trail, one traveled by Maine Game Wardens while they searched for him Monday.

He walked down the trail Tuesday morning and was discovered by a Massachusetts snowmobiler, Joseph Paul, about 9 a.m.

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Lost skier

Why the secrecy! Why did the mother not allow the superintendent of his school comment... Why sneak out of the hospital and not face the press and the national media to answer their questions and why not graciously accept the gift from Mr. Searles who waited 3 hours outside the hospital tp deliver it? That is the least the family could have done since so many folks took time from their schedule to look for the missing skier! I don't get it.

Gary Grenier's picture

From Massachusetts?

Never would have guessed!

Seriously, I was just as happy as everyone else that he was found alive and well.


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